The Relationship Between the Air-Sea Interactions and Tropical Cyclone Intensity Associated with the 2006 AMMA Field Experiment

Jamese Sims


The Hurricane Weather Research and Forecast (HWRF) system is used to simulate forecast of Tropical Storm Debby (August 24 - August 26) and Hurricane Helene (September 15 - September 20) in the 2006 Atlantic Hurricane Season. The model is uncoupled and initiated with GFS forecasting. It has been shown that while the official 48h track forecast errors in modelling tropical cyclone forecasts have decreased by 45%, the 48h intensity forecast errors have decreased by only 17% (Rogers et. al. 2006). In order to save human life, evacuation plans are determined by tropical cyclone track and intensity forecasts. Therefore, the need for improving intensity forecast is urgent (Black et. al. 2006). The impact of air-sea interactions - latent and sensible heat fluxes on the forecasting of tropical cyclone activity in the Atlantic Ocean will be discussed. Authors have shown that latent and sensible heat fluxes provide fuel for tropical cyclones as the ocean and atmosphere exchange heat energy. In this study, simulations with varying latent and sensible heat fluxes in the HWRF model are undertaken to evaluate the model’s forecast of storm intensity.